PartA: Skills Development
Task1: Get to know Google Drive
Iusing Google Drive I had to open my Gmail account first and theaccess the functions icon where I can access the Google drive. Thencreated a document in it, then I saved it in Google Drive. Then Iallowed other Gmail accounts to access it. To some I gave the rightto access and edit and to some simply to access or read it. For thosewho were given rights to access and edit it I asked them to edit itand see what happens. We were accessing the same document at the sametime from different computers. I noticed that their edits came inreal time. To those who were only given the right to access and notedit they tried editing but they were not allowed by the document.The same we did for the presentation and the same thing happened.Only this time one of us and not me made the presentation first and Iwas one of those who are asked to edit.
Duringthe editing of the documents, some of the computers which we haveused were very slow. We also noticed that editing the same portion ofthe document at the same time can be very confusing as we will notknow which the correct edit is and which is not. We also noticed thatmany people editing the same document can really slow down the GoogleDrive. So what we do in order to solve this problem is to edit thedocument one by one and we also selected a better internet connectionand newer computers. This steps really speed-up our work and we gotvery interesting results.
Howto use in management
GoogleDrive (G-drive) is very useful in the field work where each member ofa team is in different places but they need to collaborate with theirdata. For example one member can be on one state and the other memberis on another state but they need to fill in some data blanks in asingle document. By storing the document in the G-drive both teammembers can access it and input their data. The team leader can alsoaccess it and see the development of the work which they have done.In other words multiple accesses are possible for a single documentin G-drive.
Anotheruse of the Google Drive is that it is also useful in managingsecurity of limiting who are the people who can have access or evenrights to edit certain documents. This is because you can applyrestrictions to the documents in G-drive. These restrictions includewho can view the documents and who can view and edit them. HenceG-drive can be used in managing projects and security. Managingsecurity is important especially when the client of a project thatthe team is currently working on involves information that should notbe made public, like a company secret is involved. Being able to hidethe information is very important in order to gain the confidence ofthe client.
Task2: Online surveys
UsingGoogle drive which was previously described and done on previousclasses, we have used another function that is incorporated insidethe G-drive, which is the Google form, which is perfect for makingsurveys. Using Google form we made a five Item survey. It is the kindof survey where the survey respondent simply has to tick some of thecheck boxes. There were 5 questions like this, all in all. The surveyform was sent to 5 other students who answered it and returned theresults. We have also used another survey making software and servicecalled the SurveyMonkey. The same type of survey form was created andsent to the same people. The performance of the two programs andservices were then compared.
Itwas not easy to make the survey forms in the Google forms as we donot have much knowledge in it. I personally did not even know that itdoes exist with G-mail. But we have easily researched about in theinternet and it was easy after all. The same is true with surveymonkey. The only difference between the two is the SurveyMonkey iseasier to use and I noticed that it has more options. But Google formis more professional looking. Also, because Gmail is used by all ofus it was a lot easier to send it. For survey monkey we had to haveaccounts first on SurveyMonkey before we can use it.
Howto use in management
Thefirst way to use either of the two programs or services in managementis when the organization needs to conduct internal or externalsurveys. For example, if the projects team leader or the companymanager wishes to know what the employees view about certain changesin the company, then he or she can simply make a survey document andsend them to the employees. What is so amazing about these programsor services is that the data can be graphed and so you can easily geta visual result and visual assessment of the survey.
Thesecond way to use the Google form or SurveyMonkey is for planning anevent for the company. There are some events which needs furtherdecision making such as the venue or the schedule when the majority,if not all, of the employees will be free to join the companyactivity, such as company outing or team building. You can easilyknow this information by sending an inquiry document using a GoogleForm or a SurveyMonkey form to all employees and see their mostavailable date and their most preferred venue. In other words Googleform or SurveyMonkey are highly efficient for information gathering.
UsingNetlytic is a little complicated compared to the rest of theapplications or services that we have studied. This is because it hasmany functionalities and the interpretation of the image produced canbe confusing at first. Nevertheless the basic steps were easy tofollow. First, I had to create an account in Netlytic. I then studiedits basic functions such how to map the network. It is basicallyentering names or web pages that I wanted to become part of mynetwork. In this case I used my Twitter account to map my socialnetwork. The result was figure of a series of nodes and connectionsbetween nodes which shows how my friends are related to each other. Iwas able to identify which among my friends are related to each otherand which are not.
Justlike the problem with the G-drive, the main issue in using theNetlytic is speed. It took my some hours to just input informationand generate the figures. More over there many functionalities inNetlytic that are not easily understood. Nevertheless, the formerproblem was solved by using a computer with better specs and usingsmaller data sets – my twitter account instead of my Facebookaccount. The second problem was solved by looking at tutorials in theinternet. I have found several of them and they teach in great detailwhich made it possible for me to learn the basics of making images ormapping my social network up to interpreting them.
Howto use in management
Companymanagement or project management involves the use of communicationsoftware. Usually companies make rules on how to use this software tomaintain the integrity both of the communication process and that ofthe software used. Nevertheless, it is really hard to monitor theinteraction of people using this communication software. So in orderto determine the monitor the interaction, Netlytic is very helpful.Using this application a manager can easily determine whether oneemployee is using the communication software outside companyjurisdiction, such as linking the software to social networks outsideof the company like Facebook or Twitter. In other words, it ishelpful in monitoring the flow of data with a particular system usedby the company.
Anotherpossible use of this software is if the company has an account onsocial networking sites like Facebook or Twitter and it want tomonitor the progress of the growth of its network. For example, thecompany had decided to implement a strategy to increase its socialnetwork presence within a year and it wants to have a metrics fordetermining the effectiveness of this strategy. The company may turnto Netlytic to gather information as to how fast and how the size ofthe network size has changed for that particular time frame.
Task6: Quantified Self Tool
Forthis task I have used the tool offered in thehttp://quantifiedself.com/about/.The tool basically monitors or tracks your activities. Using the toolI have inputted my activities which include: calorie intake,exercise, sleep, school, and mood, within a week’s time frame. Thetool automatically computes the rates of each activity within theweek so I really did not do much when it comes to computation. Partof the task was to ponder or contemplate on the result of thetracking as well as about the tool. With regards to the tool, Ithought it was very user friendly because you just have to input andit automatically generates the statistics. With regards to myactivities, I think I am falling short on my exercise, as for therest i was doing pretty fine.
Therenot much problems encountered with this task as it simply needed meto input my activities and the tool does the rest. The real problemis sometimes I need to make time for it. The tool was not in syncwith the system of my mobile device so I needed barrow another mobiledevice from a friend in order to use it. Another problem is that Idon’t really usually track what I do, so it was kind of new thingfor so sometimes I forget to input my activities on the exact thesame time every day, so sometimes have to just recall what I did inthe past hours rather than record them before doing or right afterdoing them.
Howto use in management
Thisis very useful in management particularly in monitoring individualemployee productivity. The company in order to become effective inmeeting its goal must be able to help its employees perform at theirbest. This can only be done if the employees have their own basis fortheir performance. Hence the tool is handy because they can use itfor such purpose. What the management can do is to compare the selfevaluated performance of their employees to their peer evaluation oflead evaluation and then discuss further improvement to meet thediscrepancies between the two evaluations.
Thistool can also be sued to check whether the personal life and theprofessional or company life of each employee remains in balanced.Note that for a company to be successful it needs to satisfy thecompany needs or goals as well as the individual goals of each of itsemployees. Such desire will help the employees perform at their bestefforts. Accordingly, the management can encourage each employee tomonitor their company life and personal life and ask them to evaluatetheir level of satisfaction for the balance between the two. Thecompany can then help the employees if there is an imbalance.
Task7: Social Search
Forthis particular task I have used the analytics.topsy.com andboardreader.com. The search term that I used is “oil price.” Ihave imputed the search term on each of the search boxes of the twowebsites and clicked search. After a few seconds the search resultpage was shown to me. The analytics.topsy showed only one results –it was graph of oil price from March to April, while the results forboardreader.com was like that from Google – there were a number ofproposed websites where I can get the information that I need as wellas a graph on the upper right side of the search results page. Forthis task, I could say that I like the boardreader.com better as itprovides more proposed websites than analytics.topsy. These were theresults of the searches:http://topsy.com/analytics?q1=Oil%20price&via=Topsy,and http://boardreader.com/s/oil%20price.html
Theonly problem I had in this particular task is that foranalytics.topsy I did not get enough information overview in theresults. It was just a graph with no explanation in it like is thatprice of oil in the US or is it the world’s average. So what I didis to input more search terms o the three search boxes like: oilprice, US, World. I was given two graphs afterwards. It was duringthis part of the activity that I realize that analytics.topsy is avery good application for comparing information, it is actuallybetter than boardreader.com in the aspect of comparison. The speedwas also a lot faster in using the analytics.topsy.
Howto use in management
Thesetwo tools are very useful for management. Imagine if these twotechnologies can be used for searching with the company’s database.I other words the two applications are very useful in managinginformation. For example, an employee can use these two tools inmaking reports, particularly, trend reports which may be necessary inmaking company decisions. A company for example, may compare thesales of a particular product or services for different consecutiveyears in deciding which product to focus on. A graph like thatgenerated from analytics.topsy will be most helpful.
Thesetools are also helpful in obtaining trend information outside thecompany. In order words, they are very useful in managing companystudies. The company for example may examine the different trends onconsumerism. Information on trends are also important in makingnecessary shift if service or product production for a company, inother words, in ensuring that it still meets the customer needs andwants. The company can even use these tools in comparing their levelof performance or competitiveness with their competitors. This can bedone by comparing their company information contained on theirdatabases and the information about their competitors which are foundin the World Wide Web.
Duringthe discussion I have responded to the following prompts:UnderstandingInformation Needs, Information is Social. My favorite discussion wasthat on the understanding Information Needs. The reason why I reallyliked this discussion is because it answers almost all my question onwhy I should be taking the course. As a student I am well aware ofthe hardships that we must undergo to in order to meet the demands ofthe teachers or the academic institution, without reallyunderstanding how the things we learned would actually help us in ourfuture pursuit.
WhenI was still in high school I really complained about the many thingsthat they teach which I thought were not even necessary for my futureprofession For example, what is the purpose of memorizing some of theelements in my chemistry class to what I was about to do in thefuture? Nothing – I thought. So I was not appreciative about themand even hated the subjects thinking that they were a waste of timeand money and effort too. So I thought such discussion about thecourse and its nature and how it can beneficial for students like mewould be very necessary. I learned from the discussion that thecourse would help determine the correct information which will benecessary to do my work. This is also very relevant to me and forevery student because we are in the information age. There are a lotof information today that is available in the internet and it takes agood knowledge and a good deal of judgment as to which information orinformation source should be deemed reliable. In correct knowledgecould lead very bad results in management. Information is crucial inmaking correct decisions among managers. If they start with wronginformation, it is more likely that they end up with wrong managementdecisions. In this discussion about the nature of data and how theyare processed. With this discussion I have finally realized theimportance of my courses and how they can help me become a bettermanager someday even a better subordinate first. I will be able tocontribute to the success of my future company and share my knowledgeto other people. My least favorite discussion is the question“Information is Social,” where I posted the question, “why dowe need/value privacy?”
Idid not like this discussion as much as I liked the other becausethere were only few points that I learned from the discussion. Inother words, my question was not answered in very many details. Inconclusion, I can say that the discussion was very informative andvery entertaining at the same time. There are many things that I didnot know before that I know now. The discussions also helped me toappreciate my course. The discussion helped me to understand possiblefuture roles and has given an idea on how to go about avoidingproblems or how to solve them if I will ever encounter them. Thebiggest challenge however in such discussion is to get everybody toparticipate and share their view, and that is something I think thenext group would need to really focus on.
Iwas part of the group named, “OnPoint Communication Consultancy,”during the group work. In the group work which we did, I have learnedthe importance and significance of collaboration and thecollaborative or communication technologies Skype and emails. Today’swork environment necessitate that we communicate in long distancesdue to work demands, and also because of outsourcing. But it is stillnecessary to communicate regularly so people cannot always travel totalk face to face and so we need to have a technology that will helpus communicate even if we are so far away from each other. So weinvented the technologies like email or chat like Skype. During theactivity we did chat and email communication instead of face to facecommunication in order to get a feel of how online communicationfeels and how different it is from face to face communication. As Ireflect on the activity I have made some very important realization.This realization is that face to face communication is still the bestmethod of communication – if possible. This is becausecommunication also involves other forms of language – not onlyverbal language but also body language like facial expressions ofgestures which could add up meaning to the words being uttered. Icame to realize that these technologies are only most effective forwork related communication where the communication process obeyscertain rules. But in personal life, they can be very non-beneficialif we substitute it to face to face communication. This is because,since there no rules in personal communication, then it can beconfusing what the other person is saying.
Mybiggest challenge was actually to be understood both in my writtenand chat communication. This is because I am not yet very good inEnglish, especially in speaking it so my other group mates areconfused by me – I think. I also cannot understand them fully. Inother words language barrier is the biggest challenge in chat andemail communication. I am thankful that we can always clarify whatthe other group member has said so that we will really understandeach other. Another challenge in that the internet is slow so wecannot get reply on time. I can only imagine if such is the caseduring work and it is needed that some information be transmittedfast – the work will be adversely affected, for sure. It istherefore advisable for the next groups to consider first how toovercome language barriers and learn how to help one another overcomethem. There are some technologies which are also available in theinternet like the Google translate, and I think they can be helpfulin limiting language barrier. I also advice the next groups to makesure that their internet connection is strong and reliable so thatthere be no interruptions in the communication. Note that when thereare interruptions in the internet connection the chat messages getdisarranged so you really do not know which message come first andwhich message came last so there is too much confusion. Anotheradvice is that next group to really ponder the importance of face toface communication so that they will learn to appreciate it toodespite they need to use online communication. For me onlinecommunication is a wonderful and powerful communication strategy butit can never ever replace the face to face communication.